Love it or hate it, the 1970s were a colorful time in interior design,” says Gioi Tran, coprincipal of San Francisco–based Applegate Tran Interiors. It’s a statement made in defense of his adventurous color choices for this Pacific Heights kitchen remodel, in which the homeowners—children of the 1970s—wanted to incorporate some of the era’s pop art flair for, you know, old times’ sake.
Drawing inspiration from Andy Warhol’s Goethe Green and Yellow and Lichtenstein’s Still Life with Crystal Bowl, Tran and coprincipal Vernon Applegate opted for a color palette of the decade’s grooviest hues, harvest gold and avocado green, and a materials selection that included a high dose of polyurethane plastic—considered “high tech” back in the day.
Of course, there’s a touch of organic goodness here, too—this is California, after all. The designers chose eco-friendly Caesarstone for the countertops, and the cabinets are sheathed in espresso-stained white-oak veneer. Tran, however, keeps circling back to that green hue, which even permeated a surrealist vision he had last summer, soon after completing the project. “I dreamed that I was in Dalí’s painting The Persistence of Memory, but instead of melted blue watches, the landscape was strewn with molten avocado halves,” recalls Tran. “Now, that’s dedication to design!”